Jim Pethokoukis: Is the computer revolution already over?
It certainly doesn’t feel like it, with all the shiny new toys in shiny new forms coming out all the time — but the productivity and price gains for business have been slowing.
Well, Moore’s Law was cancelled several years ago. If were still in effect, we would have computers, tablets and smart phone running at around 30 GHz. And artificial intelligence, which has been promising and failing to deliver big break throughs for over 40 years would be a reality, and we would have Asimov’s robots. MS Word would even have a grammar checker that worked.
Hubert Dreyfus’ book “What Computers Still Can’t Do,” MIT Press (1992), is still relevant.
Technology is more than processors, there’s also nanotech, biotech, mechanics…
Price is tied to demand and most people don’t need more processing power. Spreadsheets and web browsers don’t tax modern computers, there’s only so many people actually pushing the boundaries (audio and graphics workstations, complex simulators etc). Consuming entertainment doesn’t require the same power as producing it, even accounting for gamers.
That’s why most of the advancement in computing is happening in miniaturization and design, it’s what people want.
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